Shrubs or small trees, evergreen, (0.6-)1-4 m tall. Young branchlets longitudinally ridged and sulcate, puberulent or glabrescent along groove; older branchlets gray-white, subterete, longitudinally minutely fissured, leaf scars raised, lenticels absent. Petiole 4-8 mm, adaxially narrowly sulcate and puberulent; leaf blade abaxially greenish, adaxially deep green, shiny, quadrangular-oblong, rarely ovate, 4-9 × 2-4 cm, thickly leathery, both surfaces glabrous, midvein impressed adaxially, lateral veins 5 or 6 pairs, anastomosing near margin, evident abaxially, obscure adaxially, base rounded or subtruncate, margin with 1 or 2 spines per side, sometimes entire, apex with 1 strong spine often reflexed. Inflorescences: cymes, fasciculate, axillary on second year’s branchlets; persistent scales suborbicular, pubescent and ciliate; bracts ovate, pubescent, ciliate, apex obtuse or mucronate; flowers yellowish, 4-merous. Male inflorescences: cymes of order 1 or 2, 1-3-flowered; pedicels 5-6 mm, glabrous; bracteoles basal, broadly deltoid; calyx discoid, ca. 2.5 mm in diam., lobes broadly deltoid, ca. 0.7 × 1.5 mm, membranous, sparsely puberulent, ciliate; corolla rotate, ca. 7 mm in diam., petals reflexed, oblong-ovate, 3-4 mm, basally connate; stamens ca. as long as or slightly longer than petals, anthers oblong-ovoid, ca. 1 mm; rudimentary ovary subglobose, apex obtuse or rounded, indistinctly 4-lobed. Female inflorescences: 1-flowered cymes; pedicels 7-9 mm, glabrous; bracteoles 2, basal, broadly triangular; calyx and corolla as in male flowers; staminodes ca. 4/5 as long as petals, sterile anthers ovoid-sagittate; ovary oblong-ovoid, 3-4 mm, ca. 2 mm in diam., stigma discoid, 4-lobed. Fruit red, globose, 8-10 mm in diam.; fruiting pedicel 1.3-1.4 cm; persistent calyx quadrangular; persistent stigma discoid, distinctly 4-lobed; pyrenes 4, obovoid or ellipsoidal, 7-8 mm, ca. 5 mm in diam., rugose and rugose-pitted throughout, abaxially longitudinally 1-sulcate, endocarp bony. Fl. Apr-May, fr. Aug-Dec. 2n = 38*.